Timsbury shown within Hampshire
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
|UK Parliament||North West Hampshire|
Timsbury is a village located in Hampshire, England, near the town of Romsey. It lies mainly along the A3057 road running north from Romsey towards Stockbridge. It has a population of around 400. Timsbury has grown from a traditional village centred on the Manor House (now split into many dwellings) and the Church of St Andrew. Although there may have been a Saxon church, the current building probably dates from around the early 15th century. Its name is derived from the Old English timber + byrig (dative of burh), meaning 'timber fort or manor'.
Historically, it was to Timsbury that Edmund Sharp and his wife Alice moved from the county of Berkshire towards the end of the seventeenth century and a direct descendant of Edmund's was Richard Sharp (politician), once hailed as possibly being the most popular man in Georgian London. An interesting anecdote has survived concerning one of Edmund's sons, Richard, who, born in 1665 gained a reputation as an accomplished wrestler and ‘cudgeller’in the area. Even in those days cudgelling was a very old custom and especially popular in the West of England where great pride was attached to skills which were often handed from father to son. It was a fast and furious activity conducted brutally using a short club and the expression ‘to break a head’ was associated with the cudgeller’s sport since the victor was he who first drew blood from a gash to the head. The story recorded by his grandson and clearly cherished by later generations underlines the extent of this Richard’s physical prowess,
While he lived at Romsey he of a summer’s day rode up to Timsbury, where he lived, where he had been brought up and where when young he had been so fond of wrestling. It so happened that a stage was erected and sitting on his horse he stayed long enough to see a man throw two or three men who had mounted the stage against him, till all were intimidated from entering the list; the conqueror …. triumphed on the stage with so much arrogance that my grandfather was tempted to humble him; therefore he got off his horse, mounted the stage, threw the boaster on his back and having humbled the boaster he immediately took horse and left them.
In time the Sharp family became well established in the Romsey area and during the 18th and 19th centuries many of them held important positions as merchants or influential citizens of Romsey. A brass floor plate in Romsey Abbey commemorates many of them.
In modern Timsbury, the local amenities include one pub of which the most frequented is "The Malthouse", one car garage, a recycling site.
The “Bear and Ragged Staff” pub is also popular for meals having been extended over the centuries, but is located in Michelmersh.
The local telephone exchange is Braishfield with most telephone numbers in the village 01794 368XXX. Because of the distance to Braishfield, broadband links are only about 2 megabit per second.
Local amenities for the combined parish of Michelmersh and Timsbury include the Jubilee (village) Hall, used by many local organisations and the sports pavilion.
The ladies of Timsbury were bequeathed a hall which with the decline in local WI membership has now been sold to the village band.
The parish publishes a bi-monthly newsletter distributed free to households in the parish.
The late cartoonist Thelwell lived in the village adjacent to a horse riding school.
The Timsbury Fishery offers private fishing on the River Test.
The Romsey sports field is on the A3057 in Timsbury.
Adjacent villages include Awbridge, Kimbridge, Mottisfont, Mottisfont & Dunbridge railway station, Lockerley, Houghton, Hampshire, Horsebridge railway station, Kings Sombourne, Braishfield, Hursley, Ampfield,
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- Mills, A.D: A Dictionary of English Place-Names, page 330. Oxford University Press, 1991.
- see Clayden, P. W.. : The Early Life of Samuel Rogers Smith, Elder & Co. 1887.
- Knapman, D. - Conversation Sharp - The Biography of a London Gentleman, Richard Sharp (1759-1835), in Letters, Prose and Verse. [Private Publication, 2004]p.1 British Library.